Not so fast... I found another: http://managingnews.com/
Well I think with your background, it will be initially faster to move ahead using WP but I'm not sure it is as flexible a solution in the long run. The way I look at is that the guys who built The Examiner, The Economist, Popular Science, Sony, Warner Bros, Yahoo Research, Whitehouse.gov, etc... had the resources to choose any platform they wanted but they chose Drupal. They must have compelling reasons for making their choice.
Well, here's where Drupal really shines because at it's core is the user management system and it's solid. It's so powerful and extensible in some cases I've used it to manage thousands of user profiles and in others I've used user profiles to act as a content type for distributor lists where the distributor can log in and modify their own listing, locations, etc... It's not a module added to the system, it is an integral part of the core system.
Yup, I think it would take a lot of action to take out a website. I built a site for a flight club with no special caching or optimizing, running on generic shared hosting and I saw it manage traffic spanning a couple of thousand visitor sessions without skipping a beat. At any given moment it was managing 1500 - 2000 individuals. With that in mind I'm pretty sure a managed server or cloud based hosting situation will take anything you throw at it, especially if you set up caching and load balancing.
Well that's the thing... I think it must be able to scale to a very high point, other wise it wouldn't be able to handle the traffic of the high traffic sites it runs. I can't imagine how much traffic Whitehouse.gov, Warner, Sony, The Examiner, The Economist or MTV UK get but it must be massive and yet it seems to manage quite well. There are some tricks to managing all that traffic like "Varnish" and Pressflow but it seems to me that the platform has proven to handle the scalability question quite well.
Yeah, The Onion is a bit of a sad story. It was a Drupal 4 site built back in the day (2005ish) when Drupal best practices were somewhat non-existent and the team that built the site hacked the crap out of it to make it work. The result was that as Drupal evolved through versions 5 & 6, The Onion's version was too modified to update cleanly. Also, I think The Onion tech team were happier writing code than learning the best practices of a CMS framework so they chose Django... It probably worked best for what they needed to do.
- I had limited exposure to D4 and moved from D4 to D5 almost as soon as I started working in Drupal. Both D4 and D5 were IMO easier to write code for but this also made it easier to paint yourself into corners. As Drupal has evolved the API has become more complex, meaning that it's more complicated to code but provides more flexibility and deeper hooks into the core of the CMS so that your code can effect and be effected by actions and events closer to the core of the CMS. It's also a heck of a lot more secure and snappy.
Thanks, I hated Drupal when I got dragged into my first Drupal site but then I became addicted, scrapped my own CMS and made it my mission to become a Drupal Ninja... I'm not there yet but I'm still working at it